Soprano Winnie Nieh (聶樂天) from Hong Kong made her European solo debut under Maestro Helmuth Rilling’s baton in Bach’s Cantata BWV 147 in the 2012 Musikfest Stuttgart in Germany. She was recently invited by the Metropolitan Opera Guild to perform at Dawn Upshaw’s master class as one of the two featured young singers. This summer she will be performing as a soloist at the Amherst Early Music Festival in Grant Herreid’s “Every Man in his Humor”, a staged project of English lute songs; working with Julianne Baird and Drew Minter at the Baroque Opera Workshop at Queens College; and competing as a Finalist in the Madison Early Music Festival’s Handel aria competition.
First Place winner in the 2012 St. Andrews Arts Council International Aria Competition and a Resident Artist with Opera Company of Brooklyn, her other engagements in the 2012-13 season include: the roles of Despina (Così Fan Tutte), Papagena (Die Zauberflöte) and Lucinde (Gounod’s Le Médecin Malgré Lui), Eve in Haydn’s Le Schöpfung, the soprano solo in Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Mozart’s adaption of Handel’s Messiah and Mendelssohn’s Magnificat (Op.69/3), and a solo recital sponsored by Freeport Memorial Library.
In the 2013-14 season, she will be appearing as the soprano soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the American Chamber Orchestra and Cathedral Choir, performing a recital to benefit the Connecticut Summer Opera Foundation and covering the role of Oscar (Un Ballo in Maschera).
Since her operatic debut as Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro) while at Harvard University, she has performed numerous roles including Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Blondchen (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Madame Herz (The Impresario), Amor (Orfeo ed Euridice), Voce dal cielo (Don Carlo), Olympia (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), La Fée (Cendrillon), Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), Violetta (La Traviata), Giannetta (L’Elisir d’Amore) and Mélisande (Pelléas et Mélisande). Prior oratorio solo engagements in New York, Greater Boston and San Francisco include: Bach’s Mass in B Minor, St John Passion and Magnificat in D, Monteverdi, Schütz, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, M.A. Charpentier’s Messe de Minuit, Mozart’s Requiem, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, Fauré’s Requiem and Beethoven’s Mass in C. In 2012, she made her Canadian debut as the soprano soloist at the St. Andrews Festival Orchestra’s annual gala concert in NB, Canada. She has premiered works at Juilliard and Longy School of Music, and her solo back in 2002 at the International Choir Olympics in Busan, South Korea contributed to a Gold Medal for the Diocesan Girls’ School Choir from Hong Kong, her hometown.
An all-round musician with perfect pitch, she received Associate of Trinity College London diplomas in voice, violin and piano, and her B.A. with a language citation in French from Harvard University. She was one of three sopranos selected to participate in the prestigious Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart’s master class series in 2012. She continues to captivate her audiences with her “fantastic facility” and “clarity of tone”. Ms. Nieh currently studies with Neil Semer in New York, NY.
Photo: Dan Demetriad